As you may know, I have been struggling with a variety of strange health problems off and on that have been getting steadily worse over the past several years. After visiting a myriad of doctors, I have finally received a comprehensive diagnosis and the answer is complex.
I have a dangerous combination of tick-borne infections that have become chronic and incredibly difficult to treat – severely weakening my immune system and affecting every part of my body. Without knowing it at the time, a tick bite on a backpacking trip six years ago caused me to become infected with Lyme disease
and the co-infections Babesia
(a parasite) and Bartonella
(a bacteria). For some people, typical presentation does not immediately occur and these illnesses can slowly wreak havoc destroying health over the course of years, as was the case for me. Due to my now compromised immune system, I also have a deeply rooted chronic staph infection called MARCONS
(Multiple Antibiotic Resistant Coagulase Negative Staphylococci), a digestive bacterial imbalance called SIBO
, multiple types of mold
(yes, mold) colonization within my body, Candida enteritis
– a chronic fungal infection in my digestive system and other areas (which also tested positive for an unusual resistance to most typical therapies), as well as severe allergies which now require me to carry an Epi-Pen.
Although I still look OK, these illnesses have at this point left me disabled in a plethora of ways, as I continue to lose strength and the ability to power through my day as time goes on. I can no longer hike, surf, dance, take long walks, or do many of the things I love best. Even playing my instruments for too long results in painful hand cramps. The scariest part is that it will only continue to get worse if left without prompt and proper treatment. Chronic Lyme patients can develop fatal cardiac infections, brain damage, increased risk for cancers and more. Symptoms change and spike in severity giving me some good days where though I don’t feel well I can push myself hard to do things and other days where I can’t get out of bed at all.
To give you an idea of what this is like, just a few of the symptoms I battle with include: insomnia that prevents me from sleeping more than a few hours without interruption (even with medication), severe bone and joint pain, crippling fatigue, speech problems that come and go, nerve pain, difficultly breathing at times (which has forced me to carry an inhaler), painful rashes and itching (especially in sensitive areas,) memory loss, feeling “foggy” all the time, low white blood cell count, digestive hormonal imbalance, depression, anxiety, mood swings, suicidal thoughts, hypothyroidism, menstrual pain and abnormal cycles, muscle twitches and cramps, inability to heal fully from injury, severe and longer lasting infections from other ordinary illnesses, and more.
My health is quickly getting worse and it is imperative that I start treatment as soon as possible. Considering the complexity of the situation, we plan to see a leading specialist on tick-based infections who will craft a custom treatment plan to tackle everything in the best way possible, step by step. Luckily, my diagnostician seems confident that with the proper treatment, I could be healthy again in as little as two years.
Unfortunately this condition is not yet recognized by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), and as such, we’ve been told that little to none of the treatments are likely to be covered by insurance.
While we plan to pursue every resource and assistance program at our disposal, the treatments and medications could cost more than $1,000 a week upfront
, and the doctors have told us it will take at least two years to beat this. Due to the difficulty of diagnosing this particular set of illnesses, we’ve exhausted our limited savings just getting to this point, so we are hoping and praying for your support. You truly can help save my life – every donation helps, no matter how small, as does sharing this page with your family, friends, and colleagues.
Thank you so much for your time, your love, and all your support and generosity. Any help whatsoever that you can provide is truly a miracle and a blessing to our family!
Learn more about:Lyme disease - ILADS.org
Chronic Lyme - LymeDisease.org
Co-Infections - LymeDisease.org
"When Not Feeling Like Yourself Can Be Life-Threatening" - Cosmopolitan
"Lyme: The Infectious Disease Equivalent of Cancer, Says Top Duke Oncologist" - Huffington Post
For anyone who may be interested, my mom Genie Davis, a professional journalist, corporate media pro, novelist, arts professional and editor/writer at www.DiversionsLA.com
, is graciously offering the following services for interested donors.
With a donation of $300 (select one):
-published artist profile and description of work (up to 750 words; see www.diversionsLA.com for samples)
-writing critique (screenplays, novels - detailed critique which will vary in word count)
-marketing/promo/PR material for any retail business, artistic work, musical act, or social organization (up to 1,000 words)
-one week full social media campaign (Twitter, Facebook)
With a donation of $500 or more (select one):
-corporate writing: video script, training manual, PR, marketing material (length depends on need)
-grant proposal writing
In addition, photographer Gloria Plascencia is generously offering a free photo package with a donation of $250 or more (a $375 value!) Learn more about Gloria at www.gloriaplascencia.com.
Those who donate interested in these services can contact Genie at genie@diversionsLA.com